How Do I ?

Household Benefits Package

This package includes:

  • Electricity allowance or Natural Gas allowance or Bottle Gas allowance
  • Free Television Licence

An Electric Ireland Customer:

The Electricity Allowance is a cash credit each month. This credit will be automatically applied to your bill if you are an Electric Ireland customer. This will be shown as €35 per month credit on your Electric Ireland bill.
Other electricity providers:
If you are not an Electric Ireland customer, your Electricity Allowance is paid directly to you to use towards your electricity bill. In this case, the allowance can be paid into your bank account or at your local post office.
If you are already getting an Electricity Allowance and change your electricity provider, you do not need to reapply. Your Electricity Allowance will continue to be paid – either as a credit to your bill with Electric Ireland or as a cash payment with other suppliers.

Natural Gas Allowance

Depending on your supplier the Natural Gas Allowance of €35.00 can be paid as a cash credit on your gas bill or on the first Tuesday of each month to an account in a financial institution or a post office.
If you live in self-contained accommodation (a flat or an apartment) and you have a slot meter or the landlord is the registered owner you may qualify for a Group Account Allowance.

Free Television Licence

Once you qualify for the Household Benefits Package, you become eligible for a Free Television Licence from the next renewal date of your television licence.
When you qualify for the Household Benefits Package, the Department issues you with a TV licence, and also notifies An Post of your entitlement to a free licence.
Household Benefit Package rates in 2013


Everyone aged 70 or over living in Ireland can apply for this scheme regardless of their income or who lives with them. If you live in a Nursing home you will qualify for the telephone allowance if you have your own telephone account.
If you are under age 70, and in receipt of a qualifying payment, and live alone or only with certain accepted people (i.e. your spouse or partner) and you are getting an increase for them in your payment or they qualify for a payment in their own right.
If you are Widowed and aged 60 to 65 and your late spouse was getting the benefits before their death you may now apply for the allowance in your own name. Ask your supplier to put your name on the bills if you have not already done so.
You are getting a Carer’s Allowance or in need of constant care and attention yourself.
If you are in receipt of these benefits and you change address or your partner dies and the benefits are in his or her name you must re-apply for these benefits in your own name. Bills must be changed into your name when re-applying.
Bottled Gas Allowance
If your home is not connected to an electricity or natural gas supply but you otherwise satisfy the conditions of the scheme, you may get the Bottled Gas Allowance. This is paid as a monthly payment to your nominated financial account or post office,

Living Alone Allowance

If you are 66 years or over and live alone, you will qualify if you are getting one of the following payments

You will also qualify if you are under 66, live alone and are getting Disability Allowance, Invalidity Pension, Incapacity Supplement and Blind Pension.

For further information, please contact your local Citizens Information Office or Dept of Social Protection or call Lo call 1890 500 000